Vote.

With this movement continuing to march on, I’ve had a lot of thoughts and feelings about how I want to attempt to help. I can’t go out and protest safely with CV-19 still an uncertainty and the risk is too great with a baby in this house. However, I do have this platform.

Look, I’m a white male with blonde hair and blue eyes. I don’t have and real, life consequential problems that I deal with on a daily basis. I’m the archetype for not having to worry about police, or others, labeling me and treating me a certain way based on skin color or looks. Unfortunately, that’s not the case for everyone and that’s why we have ended up where we are at.

I’m not going to sit here and preach, what is happening to our brothers and sisters across this country is disgusting and needs to end. Although this platform of mine doesn’t have a large audience, I do get views. I feel it’s the responsibility of all of us to get resources out there to their audience, however small or large.

The original intention of a post like this was to point everyone towards various resources for laws, safely protesting, charities and voting. Of course, my lack of time and self-critical nature has pulled that back. I will likely make more posts in the future for many of those things, but for now, voting.

ElectProject is a fantastic site that goes over percentages of voters that have actually cast a ballot in most of our elections. The following picture is a graph depicting what voter turnout looks like in the United States for both Presidential and Midterm elections.

vote-vep-election-percentage
ElectProject.org

In raw numbers, this is what the percentages look like between 1980 – 2018;

vote-vep-election-percentage-1980-2018
ElectProject.org

Needless to say, none of this is great. I’ve heard a lot of reasons why not to cast a vote throughout even my shorter lifetime. I’ve heard that in the grand scheme of things, voting doesn’t matter. While I disagree in premise, I get in in certain situations. If your a Republican voting in California for president, your vote is likely not going to swing the state’s electoral votes. However, local elections very much do matter, and your vote matters.

In my home state in 2018, multiple city and local seats were won by less than 50 votes, some less than 20. If you don’t think your vote maters in those situations, I don’t know what to tell you.

Another excuse, is that its too difficult to register. No, it’s not. Rock the Vote is a non-profit dedicated to making sure everyone that has the right to vote, votes. It was originally aimed at young people between the ages of 18-24, but don’t let that scare you away. It’s simple, easy and intuitive to get started.

Unfortunately, voting has become partisan in this country. You will hear that mail in voting has increased chances for fraud, it doesn’t. You’ll also hear certain individuals screaming at the top of their keyboard that fraud is rampant in our country, also wrong. The White House’s own website cites a report from Heritage.org detailing cases of voter fraud in this country. If you’re expecting millions of cases, enough to sway a Presidential Election, you’d be wrong. Their number sits at 1,071 cases, some of those cases ranging back to the 1990’s.

The overall point is to go vote. Protesting is a vital and important aspect of the First Amendment of the United States, and that should continue until currently elected officials receive the message and make a change.

For the future, your vote is important, your vote matters. Take this one easy step every few years to encourage real change in your local, state and federal elections.

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